The Problem With Rearranging Our Stuff

I’ve always been one to like change and variety. So once in awhile I’ll rearrange things in my home. Moving furniture can make your place feel fresh and new. Or repurposing a space can add variety. But rearranging stuff can become an endless loop.

I have a  3-bedroom house. It’s really more than I need, but it’s what the market offered when I was ready to buy a home. Just my daughter and I live here. We have occasional guests and have plenty of room to accommodate.

The house came with a two-car garage and a small studio out back. Like I said, it’s more than we need. That’s a lot of space for stuff.

The Problem Of Having A Bigger House Than You Need

The first problem of rearranging our stuff stems from the fact that most of us have bigger homes than we actually need. We feel a need to use up all the available space. So we buy more stuff.

When we tire of something, we either replace it or rearrange it. Does that sound familiar? How many times have you changed the look of any given room in your home?

I’ve learned to stop trying to fill the empty spaces in my home. Instead, I like each room to be sparsely furnished. But having less stuff hasn’t really solved the problem of what to do with the stuff I still have. I wind up rearranging things regularly. 

Should the spare bedroom be a guest room, an office, or a music studio? Should the sunroom be a meditation room or an exercise room. What about the studio in the garage building? What do I do with that space? It’s an endless cycle.

The Problem Of Rearranging Our Stuff

Rearranging our stuff keeps us tied to it. Instead of letting things go, we hold onto them. If I give away that old futon in the garage, I might not have it when I turn the studio into guest quarters. If I give away the old desk, I might wish I’d kept it when I repurpose my guest bedroom into an office. See how that works?

I’m actually pretty good at giving most of my unused stuff away, but not all of it. And this is why. It’s because I have more space than I need and I might use an item next time I rearrange my stuff. 

Second, rearranging stuff is just busywork. You’re not really accomplishing much. What do you create or produce when you rearrange your stuff. A new environment? Maybe. But then eight months later you decide to rearrange your stuff again. It becomes an endless cycle that keeps us tied to our stuff. 

What’s The Answer?

I can’t give you the answer for you, but I know what the potential answer is for me. It’s simple: Live in a smaller space. 

That might not happen for me immediately. But when My daughter is older, I hope to downsize into something that’s half the size of my current 1200-1400 sq. ft. home. Then I’ll have much less space to deal with. That means less stuff and less rearranging. I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to that time.

For more great articles on simple living and healthy habits, be sure to check out the Hip Diggs’ archives.


Dan Erickson
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